FA Cup

Now that the World Cup is over, you can place bets on the next upcoming matches and tournaments. And what’s a more exciting tournament to focus your gambling attention on than the FA cup? You follow it, we’re sure, but do you know about it? If you don’t, then this article will sort that out! Read on!

Humble Beginnings

The FA Cup’s status as the oldest domestic cup competition in the history of the beautiful game only adds to its illustrious history and storied legacy. The English Football Association (FA) created the FA Cup in 1872 as a competition open to teams from every division of English soccer.

As the sport has expanded in popularity in England, the cup became a welcome respite from the rest of the season. In the annals of the FA Cup, giants have been slain, and unforgettable moments have been created. Nevertheless, for every David that vanquishes a Goliath, there are rumors of weak teams and coaches who aren’t taking the cup seriously. As always, the truth is found somewhere in the middle.

The cup’s origins can be traced back to a relatively young association’s attempt to stir up support for the national game. A chance at the eventual glory of a legendary cup is a surefire way to draw in the crowds.

It’s All about the Clubs

In 1872, the first year of the FA Cup, 15 teams competed. Some of the participants were Scottish clubs. In the inaugural season, the Wanderers and the Royal Engineers both made it all the way to the championship game. Many of the teams we are familiar with today did not exist in the early days of association football. The way plays were performed back then differed greatly from the modern way.

The British Army’s Engineers football team was praised for its innovative style of play, even though they ultimately lost the game. They attempted to alter the nature of football by passing more and dribbling less. Before and for a while after this era, football was viewed as a cooperative sport. The Engineers still fell short in the final game of the inaugural season, losing by a score of 1-0 despite their new strategy. This was a pivotal moment in the history of English football that planted the seeds for the future.

Interestingly, because Queen’s Park of Scotland could not afford the cost of transportation to London for the second leg of the semi-final, the Wanderers were able to enter the final. The Wanderers advanced and became the inaugural FA Cup champions.

The FA Cup is a collection of many different stories from all over the country, allowing supporters of every club to hold out hope that this could be their year to win. 

Not All Fun and Games

Modern fans have a different perspective on the FA Cup than those of the past. In recent years, the earlier rounds have been reframed as a means of breaking in young players, thereby fostering the development of youth academies. Larger teams typically don’t alter their strategy until late in the game. Once considered the lifeblood of the footballing family, the prize money that comes with the FA Cup is now more of an incentive for clubs than winning a trophy.

However, there is one constant that has not altered. All the anecdotes, the history, and the early round games mean very little when the two teams meet in the final for the FA Cup trophy. What happens during those 90 minutes at Wembley is all that will matter. May the best team win!